Days are longer, hotter and drier. Creek flow reduces to a trickle and the water is usually quite clear. This is a good time to spot eels and fish in the water. Lizards and snakes are active, particularly near the creek where there is more food available. There is an increased potential for water eutrophication (algal blooms) due to human inputs, high temperatures and low flow.
February to mid March.
In the coldest time of the year, plant growth slows down but does not stop. For our native plants, especially the small tuberous herbs, winter is a season of growth. All sorts of fungi appear with the cool, still and misty conditions, while the ground is still warm. Although the days are short and the nights are long, birds are busy collecting nesting material in anticipation of spring. Animals such as echidnas, brush-tail and ringtail possums are mating. Many different moths emerge, and are food for birds during the day and for sugar and feathertail gliders at night.
April and May
June to mid July
Sugar glider (Petaurus breviceps) breeding occurs during winter and spring, with two young being the normal litter size. They’re also capable of becoming torpid during the cold – their body temperature, heart rate and blood pressure drop for a few days at a time while the animal is in a state similar to hibernation.
Spring brings new life to the Darebin Creek as the days get warmer and longer. Baby birds are born, frogs are calling for a mate and flowers bloom on many grasses, trees and shrubs. Fish and frogs are spawning and snakes become more active as they wake from their winter slumber.
Mid July, August
Rakali (Water Rat) Hydromys chrysogaster babies are born in spring. Litters of baby Rakali are born in burrows in the creek bank. Rakali mainly eat aquatic prey including fish, frogs, turtles, yabbies and mussels. You can distinguish the Rakali from other species by their webbed feet and white tipped tail.
Lilies flower along the creek in spring. Pale Flax Lily Dianella longifolia has a pale purple flower on long stems. The lilies grow in clumps as an understory plant in the grassy woodland community. Lilies provide good habitat for frogs and reptiles. Berries are also produced that provide food for birds.
April and May